Tuesday, March 26, 2013

EXCLUSIVE: A Natural Way to Treat Fibromyalgia

The typical fibromyalgia progression
Those of you who know me know that I have one foot planted in Western medicine, the other foot planted firmly in Eastern and so-called "alternative" medicine. The fact is, I am alive today because of both. But I recommend that you try to avoid drugs if and whenever possible.

Which brings me to the topic of fibromyalgia. As a patient advocate, my heart goes out to everyone who suffers from this problematic and often debilitating disease. A chronic musculoskeletal condition, fibromyalgia is identified by persistent pain, fatigue, and tenderness in isolated areas. 

The symptoms vary from person to person, but they typically have a direct and negative impact on the patient's quality of life. And it is a very tough disease to treat.

While fibromyalgia is the second most common musculoskeletal disorder after osteoarthritis, there unfortunately is no surefire treatment plan, and no cure. Many patients find themselves on a variety of prescription meds to help combat symptoms but often find themselves suffering unwanted side effects from these drugs. 

And as a 16-year, three-time survivor of stage IV non-Hodgkin's lymphoma cancer, I am all too familiar with pharmaceutical side effects. I'm sure many of you are, as well.

One of the most popular choices among doctors to prescribe for fibromyalgia pain is Lyrica. But this can be a scary drug, frankly. Yes, it can reduce pain, improve sleep, and help some fibromyalgia patients function better. And I know that's all that matters for people who are suffering. But it can also decrease one's quality of life due to the various risks and side effects.

Those side effects include dizziness, drowsiness, blurred vision, dry mouth, swelling of the hands and free, as well as weight gain while more serious side effects include trouble breathing, hives, and swelling of the face, mouth, gums, lips, tongue, or neck. 

Because of the seriousness and severity of some of these side effects, those suffering from fibromyalgia are looking for an alternate treatment option to naturally relieve pain and other symptoms associated with fibromyalgia. And I've just discovered one that may be of interest to folks who are dealing with fibromyalgia. It's called cupping massage therapy.

It sounds a bit wacky, but apparently it can be effective, if not curative.

Derrick Z. Venter, an expert on naturally treating pain-related disorders such as fibromyalgia, works at Bellabacia South African company that specializes in cupping massage therapy. According to Venter, cupping therapy works for many fibromyalgia patients. 

Venter explains that this "age-old treatment used in Traditional Chinese Medicine" involves the application of heated glass cups to parts of the body. The heat creates a vacuum, he says, which in return releases toxins, clears any blockages, and activates the lymphatic system. 

Venter says cupping therapy allows patients to get the relief they need naturally while posing virtually no risks or side effects compared to more traditional medicinal treatments.

There have been studies performed which prove that the natural treatment of cupping therapy is just as, if not more, effective compared to more traditional treatments. The most recent study regarding the effect of cupping therapy on fibromyalgia patients was performed in 2011, according to Mayo Clinic. 

The study was performed in Beijing with 30 consecutive patients suffering from symptoms of fibromyalgia, including generalized chronic pain. The patients received a traditional cupping treatment every day for 15 days and the intensity of their symptoms prior to starting treatment and 5, 10, 15 days, and 2 weeks following the final treatment. 

Findings concluded that medicinal cupping therapy did in fact relieve symptoms associated with fibromyalgia.

And of course this relief came without the unwanted side effects that often accompany traditional treatment methods. Natural treatment for diseases such as fibromyalgia is becoming increasingly popular among patients as the benefits become clearer.

According to Mayo Clinic, a study in 2011 evaluated the effect of traditional medicinal cupping for fibromyalgia treatment. The study was conducted with 30 consecutive patients suffering from fibromyalgia in Beijing, China. The patients received a traditional cupping treatment every day for 15 days and the intensity of their symptoms prior to starting treatment and 5, 10, 15 days, and 2 weeks following the final treatment. Findings concluded that medicinal cupping therapy did in fact relieve symptoms associated with fibromyalgia.

Venter notes that fibromyalgia and depression often go hand-in-hand as the patient deals with a chronic, frustrating, and often infuriating disorder. By alleviating fibromyalgia symptoms and avoiding unwanted side effects of many pharmaceutical treatments, fibromyalgia patients can lead a more normal lifestyle. 

According to WedMD, some of the other natural, alternative ways of treating fibromyalgia include 5-HTP (5-Hydroxytryptophan), a building block of serotonin, whose levels play a significant role in fibromyalgia pain. In one study published in the Alternative Medicine Review, researchers reported that supplementation with 5-HTP may improve symptoms of depression, anxiety, insomnia and fibromyalgia pains. 

Other natural treatments for fibromyalgia include Melatonin which can help receive sleep problems often caused by fibromyalgia, and SAM-e Help, a supplement that treats both fibromyalgia pain and depression.


  1. Fibromyalgia is common among people. I think 5-HTP is really best treatment to recover from this harmful pain.

  2. ome of the other natural, king88.asia alternative ways of treating

  3. Nice article A Natural Way to Treat Fibromyalgia.I think 5-HTP really help to recover from harm ful pain.
    The Pain Doctors San Diegoare an alternate way to recover from pain. Its really a nice information.Thanks for sharing..

  4. Great post........Fibromyalgia is frequently associated with psychiatric conditions such as depression and anxiety and stress-related disorders such as posttraumatic stress disorder.Acupuncture in Ellicott City

  5. Nice article on "A Natural Way to Treat Fibromyalgia".
    People diagnosed with fibromyalgia experience a wide range of symptoms, including fatigue,pain,stiffness,aches and muscle tenderness.According tothe theories of acupuncture and Chinese medicine, an imbalance in the flow of Qi can create symptoms and signs that reflect a Western diagnosis offibromyalgia.
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